Wednesday, November 9, 2011
Abbey Turns 11 on 11-6-11
Well, her big day didn't turn out to be very exciting because Brett and I were in the middle of dealing with the flu and all its fun. Brett mustered up enough strength to take Abbey and two of her friends to the movie, and all she wanted from me was strawberry pancakes for breakfast and a red velvet birthday cake. Ha! Easier said than done, but I was going to do all I could not to burst her bubble of innocence and confidence in me. I was going to make that breakfast and bake that cake, even if it killed me, and it nearly did. My flu tried to turn into pneumonia the next day, but some well-timed antibiotics staved that off luckily.
The pancake breakfast turned out okay, but as you can see from the pictures, the cake wasn't pretty. (And you must know that it takes a confident woman to publish these photos on the internet among all the perfect Suzy Homemaker fantasy blogs.) The recipe I used was from a reliable internet source but sometimes, no matter what, the whipped cream (that is essential in the frosting recipe) in this part of the world cannot be counted on. But being the wonderful girl Abbey is, she took it all in stride and called it her most memorable avalanche birthday cake ever. Then she told me that her birthday wish when she blew out the candles was going to be that her mom and dad get well. BIG points scored with that one!
A special thanks has to go to the Straight family for wanting to be in on the festivities and Skyping with us so they could help sing "Happy Birthday" and Jalisa could cheer Abbey on as she tried to blow out the candles. Thanks, Jim, Jennifer, Jalisa, and even Sammy the cat for being our chosen family even while we are so far away.
Speaking of how wonderful Abbey is, I have to hand it to her. She lives around expat kids who get a birthday party every year along with too much of everything else. Maybe it's because their parents are trying to compensate for not being able to live at "home", or maybe it is this way in the states as well and children are just overindulged, but whatever it is, these kids are SPOILED. Brett and I have been determined not to let that happen with our Abigail, so the birthday party is one thing we have held back on. Our older kids had maybe three birthday parties each the whole time they were growing up and that was plenty for them, for me, and especially for our budget. Even though our budget is a little better off these days, we have told Abbey that she isn't going to have a big party every year with her friends. She isn't happy about it but she understands and doesn't complain. In fact she gets involved and plans her own birthday activities. When Brett and I suggested we all go to the movies she said, "No offense guys, but I really don't want to hang out with adults all day on my birthday." Yeah, Abbey! I love it when my children know what they want and stand up for it. I hope she continues to be excited about and immersed in writing the rest of her "story" as she grows up. She is extraordinary and I continue to sit back in amazement as she conquers her world. And Mr. So Wrong Neighbor out there . . . Abbey will let you know when she is done with trick-or-treating, but luckily, this wasn't the year.